St Hilda's Ballet School
Frequently Asked Questions
Do all staff have a DBS check?
Yes. All staff involved in the teaching of children have a current DBS check.
What should my child wear for ballet?
If Cygnets, Little Swans and Big Swans want to dress up in tutus and fairy dresses that is fine as long as their movement is not restricted. Tights are optional. Ballet shoes should be pink or white and can be borrowed from us.
The following are uniform requirements for all exams.
Big Swans, Primary and Standard One. Pink leotards and a small skirt or tutu. Pink or white tights and pink ballet shoes with elastics.
Grade1 and 2 should wear a sky blue sleeveless leotard with scoop neck and back. Pink ballet socks or pink tights and pink canvas or leather ballet shoes with elastics. Skirts are no longer worn.
Grade/Standard 3 - 6 should wear a navy blue sleeveless or capped sleeved leotard. No spaghetti straps. Pink tights and pink canvas or leather ballet shoes with elastics.
Senior girls (Vocational grades and senior certificate) may wear a black leotard of any design and pink tights. A georgette skirt to mid thigh length may be worn if desired. Pink canvas or leather ballet shoes with elastics or pink soft block shoes may be worn with pink ribbons. Advice will be given regarding pointe shoes when necessary.
Boys should wear a white T-shirt and black shorts tights, leggings or unitard. Socks and shoes should be white.
Hair must be held off the face in either a ponytail or ballet bun. Small stud earrings may be worn. Make-up and jewellery is not permitted.
What is the shoe exchange?
Children's feet have a habit of growing and they often grow out of a pair of shoes before they wear them out. The shoe exchange is designed to help parents recycle shoes. You pay £5 and take a pair of shoes home. Once the shoes are too small they are swapped for another pair at no extra charge. Adult size shoes are not included in this scheme.
Shoes which are returned in a poor condition must be paid for. You can of course buy your own shoes and we are always happy to accept donations of shoes.
What should adults wear for ballet?
Whatever you are comfortable in! For some this may be leotard and tights, for others loose comfortable trousers and a top. Ballet shoes are essential, class may not be taken in socks due to the nature of the floor. Hair should be kept off the face and jewellery kept to a minimum to avoid injury.
Should I arrive early for class?
It is important not to miss the beginning of class as each class is structured to warm up the body. If you have a child to dress please come 10 minutes before their class starts in order to change.
Children will be encouraged to enter either for the Grade or Standard exams once they have achieved a suitable standard. However, exams are not compulsory and your child may progress through the school without taking any exams if they wish. Vocational exams (Intermediate, Advanced 1, Advanced 2 and Diploma) must be taken in order. Exams will incur an extra cost which may vary depending on the size of the session.
Can I stay and watch?
Parents of Cygnets and Swans may stay in the hall as young children may need a quick reassuring hug during their lesson. Please keep noise to a minimum so the music can be clearly heard. Parents of older children may stay in the kitchen where there is tea and coffee paid for on an honesty box system. Otherwise there is a great coffee shop and deli just round the corner on Newton Road.
My child has special needs, can they still dance?
Any child who can move in any way can dance. Drop us an email if you would like to discuss your child's needs with one of the teachers. Unfortunately we cannot accommodate children with very severe behavioural difficulties.